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Saturday, January 25, 2014

Baby-Led Weaning: Does It Work?

I have heard so many good things about the benefits of baby-led weaning. It's too bad I haven't tried it with my son when he first started eating solids. If I had known, I'd have made sure he has fruits, veggies and meat everyday as part of his diet and not processed food like Cerelac. I hate missing out on a good opportunity to teach my child how to be more independent during meal times and to be more interested in the food he eats. That's what BLW is supposed to teach babies from 6 months onward.

A lot of mommies swear BLW is the solution to teaching babies NOT to be picky eaters. BLW babies chew their food well and don't need to be spoonfed. Amazing. I would really like that for my little one. Cairo already turned 2 and has been spoon-fed since the day he started eating. I hope it's not too late and he'd let me try the BLW method of weaning with him.

Wait, where did you first hear about BLW?

Well, there's Mommy Talk and  Baby Led Weaning Philippines, both groups are on Facebook and they are really friendly and helpful. Mommy Talk has over 4,000 members and BLW Philippines, over 3,000. That's like wow! I joined both groups in the hope that I'd meet new friends and at the same time educate myself as a first-time mom.

What is BLW really?

BLW teaches babies to like natural food. You let them hold, lick, mash and literally play with their food until they get the idea that food is good for the tummy! You can start with a few slices of avocados. Bananas and mangoes are also good. I've seen babies eating grapes and I've seen them licking and nibbling on apple slices. Meat, too, is encouraged.

What if the baby chokes?

I have been wondering about the same thing when I first heard of BLW. I've been mashing and grinding my baby's food since day 1 and have only started trusting him with food when he turned two. I've never left him on his own during meal times. Why? Because I've seen him gobble bananas. I'd rather be around when he is eating just to make sure he's chewing his food well and not just gulping them down.

BLW, I was told, is supposed to teach babies to chew and not just bite and swallow. If you get him started as early as 6 months (some babies already have one or two teeth at this age, some would be teething), he'd most likely just play with his food during the first few days BUT then he'll see mommy and daddy eating and will try to follow what they do. That's the idea. They'll want to be eating when they see you eating, too.

Any website you can recommend with lots of good BLW stuff? 

BabyCentre has a section entirely on baby-led weaning with tips on how to get started and how to feed your baby properly. Let me know what you think of BLW ok? Leave a comment! ;-)

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